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View Full Version : Why I HATE Hardware Chainstores


oldandslow
04-16-2008, 09:39 AM
So, my family and I put out a large garden (about 2 acres) every year. As you might guess we use a tiller quite a bit. Last fall, my old tiller, a Troy built rear tine, finally bit the big one after 12 years of use. I decided to go out and buy a new one. So I do some comparison shopping and finally decide on a Husque-Varna rear tine tiller from Bomgaars.

I buy one. I bring it home, put the proper amount of oil and gas in it, take it around the garden twice, and it starts smoking and loses all power. I freak a bit, but feel confident that Bomgaars will take care of me.

How wrong I was. I just got off the phone with the mgr and he tells me its the company's (Husque-Varna) problem, not his, and to take it to a repair shop and then bill the company. So I load the thing in my neighbor's old truck, find a repair shop, and find out engine was leaking oil into the piston and we have major damage. It's gonna take the guy quite some time to fix it and it will be costly.

So I call Husque-Varna and am told to work with the people who I bought it from...

I hate corporate America....

vailpass
04-16-2008, 09:41 AM
Maybe it's because you went to a small store without much volume power.
Home Depot or Loews would have hooked you up with a new one.

ChiTown
04-16-2008, 09:42 AM
Maybe it's because you went to a small store without much volume power.
Home Depot or Loews would have hooked you up with a new one.

'zactly.

DaKCMan AP
04-16-2008, 09:51 AM
The large stores like Lowes and Home Depot suck too because everything is pre-made and application-specific. When I was working on a senior design project where we needed to machine custom parts it was very difficult to get raw material or stuff that wasn't already pre-fabricated.

Brock
04-16-2008, 09:51 AM
Bomgaars? I never heard of this gigantic corporation.

oldandslow
04-16-2008, 09:56 AM
Bomgaars? I never heard of this gigantic corporation.

http://www.bomgaars.com/index.html

They are all around NE, SD, ND, and MN.

Rain Man
04-16-2008, 09:57 AM
Bomgaars? I never heard of this gigantic corporation.

I'm thinking he lives in Finland or something. Maybe Estonia.

Bwana
04-16-2008, 09:58 AM
Maybe it's because you went to a small store without much volume power.
Home Depot or Loews would have hooked you up with a new one.

Lowes yes, but I wouldn't bet on it with Home Depot. The service level at Lowes is much better in my experience. I will only buy from Home Depot as a last resort.

If it were me, I would go directly to the store, find the manager and have a chat man to man. I bet his nards shrink when you are there in person and you should get it taken care of. If he still tries to play hardball, call their headquarters directly and start raising hell. If nothing else, they take care of it to make you go away.

Brock
04-16-2008, 09:59 AM
The large stores like Lowes and Home Depot suck too because everything is pre-made and application-specific. When I was working on a senior design project where we needed to machine custom parts it was very difficult to get raw material or stuff that wasn't already pre-fabricated.

Do you expect to be able to purchase titanium bar at your neighborhood hardware store?

DaKCMan AP
04-16-2008, 10:01 AM
Do you expect to be able to purchase titanium bar at your neighborhood hardware store?

We needed to buy some stainless steel 1/8" and 1/4" thick bars to make a scissoring mechanism and some other items but they would have stuff that was already in an L-bracket shape.

Demonpenz
04-16-2008, 10:07 AM
Husque-Varna? There is your problem. I never have any issues with my garden weasel.

Lzen
04-16-2008, 10:16 AM
Lowes yes, but I wouldn't bet on it with Home Depot. The service level at Lowes is much better in my experience. I will only buy from Home Depot as a last resort.

If it were me, I would go directly to the sore in find the manager and have a chat man to man. I bet his nards shrink when you are there in person and you get it taken care of. If he still tries to play hardball, call their headquarters directly and start raising hell. If nothing else, they take care of it to make you go away.

Agree with everything you said. Home Depot is okay, but I have always gotten better service and items from Lowe's.

Lzen
04-16-2008, 10:17 AM
We needed to buy some stainless steel 1/8" and 1/4" thick bars to make a scissoring mechanism and some other items but they would have stuff that was already in an L-bracket shape.

Sounds like maybe a machine shop would be a better bet. Home/hardware stores are good for what purpose they serve.

DaKCMan AP
04-16-2008, 10:22 AM
Sounds like maybe a machine shop would be a better bet. Home/hardware stores are good for what purpose they serve.

We did "borrow" some stuff from the mechanical dept's main machine shop, but we were machining the parts in the student shop.

We would have done the design and sent it out for fab, but we were working on a tight schedule with a design by trial-and-error methodology. :shake:

Stryker
04-16-2008, 10:26 AM
We needed to buy some stainless steel 1/8" and 1/4" thick bars to make a scissoring mechanism and some other items but they would have stuff that was already in an L-bracket shape.

You could not purchase that from a local industrial fastner company? I used to work for a couple of them while going to college and 1/8 as well as 1/4 were regularly available at a will call counter - in various grades as well.

Just curious.

DaKCMan AP
04-16-2008, 10:36 AM
You could not purchase that from a local industrial fastner company? I used to work for a couple of them while going to college and 1/8 as well as 1/4 were regularly available at a will call counter - in various grades as well.

Just curious.

It wasn't that easy to just purchase things. We'd have to jump through hoops and get signatures and approvals for most purchases. However, we had a card that we could use for anything at Lowes so that was usually the first stop.

NewChief
04-16-2008, 10:43 AM
Agree with everything you said. Home Depot is okay, but I have always gotten better service and items from Lowe's.

I think there is a regional difference between Lowe's and HD. It seems in the South and Midwest that Lowe's is much more popular, and they seem to have better stores in general. However, if you follow remodeling and such online, people on the East Coast seems to be absolutely bonkers for Home Depot. I don't know if they don't have Lowe's there, or if their stores just aren't as good of quality there as they are here.

In my mind, there's no comparison. Our HD is completely unorganized, and you can never find anyone on the floor to help you out.

ottawa_chiefs_fan
04-16-2008, 10:44 AM
I went to Home Dumpo last week to get 2 garbage cans. They had the cans but no lids. I walked for 5 minutes or more around this gigantic store to find someone to help me. went to the customer service counter - on the phone, returns - on the phone. So I went back, moved all the garbage cans out into the aisle and left. I FELT GREAT and **** Home Dumpo!!!

Phobia
04-16-2008, 10:45 AM
Maybe it's because you went to a small store without much volume power.
Home Depot or Loews would have hooked you up with a new one.

Actually - the reason for this policy is because people buy tillers, generators, and other one-time use or emergency use items and then return them - used.

Home Depot and Lowes would have told him the same thing. Their policies have recently changed.

For those of you with better service at Lowes - they're the very same. I spend about 10 hours a week in one or the other of these two stores and they're identical with their service. Sometimes you'll find somebody who is a little bit worse (or better) than the next guy but that's usually due to the individual.

FWIW, Home Depot (in my town) still offers a Veteran discount program. Lowes did until last week when they abandoned it. Guess where I'll be going for the materials I have to buy at a lumber yard now?

vailpass
04-16-2008, 10:46 AM
In Phoenix Home Depot is everywhere and going great guns. The stores are clean and well stocked, and you can get everything you need.
Lowes are nice too, not considered as much of a hard-core hardware store. All of the contractors/construction guys shop HD.
Plus if you need an illegal dayworker of two they are right there in the back of some HD parking lots.

Pitt Gorilla
04-16-2008, 10:56 AM
Menard's has great customer service.

kpic
04-16-2008, 11:01 AM
people on the East Coast seems to be absolutely bonkers for Home Depot. I don't know if they don't have Lowe's there, or if their stores just aren't as good of quality there as they are here.

We have both here (NJ). Both are within a couple of miles from me, they are exactly the same although the Lowes is a bit more for the "consumer" and the HD leans a bit to the contractors.

Both are fine though (our HD is very well organized). I usually go by price and availability on which one I go to.

ChiefButthurt
04-16-2008, 11:07 AM
Next time use a credit card and dispute the charges when it happens. AND then tell'em to take where the sun doesn't shine.

DaKCMan AP
04-16-2008, 11:11 AM
We have both here (NJ). Both are within a couple of miles from me, they are exactly the same although the Lowes is a bit more for the "consumer" and the HD leans a bit to the contractors.

Both are fine though (our HD is very well organized). I usually go by price and availability on which one I go to.

Pretty much how it is in FL. All HD's and Lowes are the same everywhere here. Usually go to whichever one is "on the way" to wherever else I'm going.

StcChief
04-16-2008, 11:14 AM
http://www.bomgaars.com/index.html

They are all around NE, SD, ND, and MN.was the ground still frozen?
J/K o:-)

what a pain in the a$$.

Baby Lee
04-16-2008, 11:35 AM
Actually - the reason for this policy is because people buy tillers, generators, and other one-time use or emergency use items and then return them - used.

Home Depot and Lowes would have told him the same thing. Their policies have recently changed.

For those of you with better service at Lowes - they're the very same. I spend about 10 hours a week in one or the other of these two stores and they're identical with their service. Sometimes you'll find somebody who is a little bit worse (or better) than the next guy but that's usually due to the individual.

FWIW, Home Depot (in my town) still offers a Veteran discount program. Lowes did until last week when they abandoned it. Guess where I'll be going for the materials I have to buy at a lumber yard now?

But if he's wanting service or an exchange, that rationale doesn't exactly fly.

stlchiefs
04-16-2008, 12:03 PM
Plus if you need an illegal dayworker of two they are right there in the back of some HD parking lots.

I thought they had started stocking them on the shelves now?

oldandslow
04-16-2008, 12:11 PM
But if he's wanting service or an exchange, that rationale doesn't exactly fly.

Exactly. I just want it fixed or I want another one.

plbrdude
04-16-2008, 12:13 PM
Bomgaars? I never heard of this gigantic corporation.

prolly kinda like menards?

Chief Chief
04-16-2008, 12:15 PM
Do you expect to be able to purchase titanium bar at your neighborhood hardware store?


Is that the fancy term for 'titty bar'?

Mile High Mania
04-16-2008, 12:24 PM
What time elapsed between purchase of the product and the problem...

What is the return policy on such a thing, per the wording on your receipt...

You always have the ability to mention the local Better Business Bureau to either the retailer or the manufacturer if things don't go your way.

Calcountry
04-16-2008, 12:29 PM
In Phoenix Home Depot is everywhere and going great guns. The stores are clean and well stocked, and you can get everything you need.
Lowes are nice too, not considered as much of a hard-core hardware store. All of the contractors/construction guys shop HD.
Plus if you need an illegal dayworker of two they are right there in the back of some HD parking lots.Nice. Just don't forget to leave the light on at your place sometime when you are gone, they tend to remember locations.

Brock
04-16-2008, 12:32 PM
Is that the fancy term for 'titty bar'?

Uh, yeah.

Chiefmanwillcatch
04-16-2008, 12:45 PM
This sh** doesn't happen with Honda. Thats why they get loyalty.

Chiefmanwillcatch
04-16-2008, 12:54 PM
I went to Home Dumpo last week to get 2 garbage cans. They had the cans but no lids. I walked for 5 minutes or more around this gigantic store to find someone to help me. went to the customer service counter - on the phone, returns - on the phone. So I went back, moved all the garbage cans out into the aisle and left. I FELT GREAT and **** Home Dumpo!!!

In your anger did you also forget where you parked your car? BAD BAD home depot.

Why didn't you check out the cans before you bought them?

stlchiefs
04-16-2008, 01:43 PM
In your anger did you also forget where you parked your car? BAD BAD home depot.

Why didn't you check out the cans before you bought them?

I think he was saying he was wanting the purchase the cans, but couldn't find the lids that went with them. Not that he'd purchased them and went back for lids.

BAD BAD reading comprehension Chiefmanwgy. :D

ottawa_chiefs_fan
04-16-2008, 02:37 PM
I think he was saying he was wanting the purchase the cans, but couldn't find the lids that went with them. Not that he'd purchased them and went back for lids.

BAD BAD reading comprehension Chiefmanwgy. :D

you are correct, sir!

dtebbe
04-16-2008, 02:53 PM
We needed to buy some stainless steel 1/8" and 1/4" thick bars to make a scissoring mechanism and some other items but they would have stuff that was already in an L-bracket shape.

Here's a good source for stuff when you don't need a ton. They ship most everything UPS.

http://aircraftspruce.com/

alanm
04-16-2008, 02:54 PM
http://www.bomgaars.com/index.html

They are all around NE, SD, ND, and MN.
That's funny I live in NE and I've never heard of them. :hmmm:

DaneMcCloud
04-16-2008, 03:07 PM
I think there is a regional difference between Lowe's and HD. It seems in the South and Midwest that Lowe's is much more popular, and they seem to have better stores in general. However, if you follow remodeling and such online, people on the East Coast seems to be absolutely bonkers for Home Depot. I don't know if they don't have Lowe's there, or if their stores just aren't as good of quality there as they are here.

In my mind, there's no comparison. Our HD is completely unorganized, and you can never find anyone on the floor to help you out.

There are Home Depot's all over SoCal but there's only one Lowes that I know of in Los Angeles.

The Home Depot Hollywood is open 24 hours. It's jam packed any time of the day or night (and I've been there 2am and couldn't believe how long the lines were that night). It's reasonably clean and organized (considering the amount of traffic) but parking's always a PITA, even with two levels but the good thing is that they usually have everything I've ever needed.

Lowes, OTOH, is more of a glorified Great Indoors or Sears. They don't have much in the way of tools, hardware (nuts & bolts) and seem to be more geared towards kitchen and bathroom installations and renovations than a true hardware store. That could just be in SoCal though, as almost every home is renovated out here at one point or another.

I purchased my kitchen cabinets at Lowes and had them do the install. It was a complete and utter nightmare. One of the installers was clearly drunk. After the cabinets were installed, they mounted all of the handles incorrectly. Every single handle was crooked and not level. So Lowes had to replace every door and drawer face (as well as order more materials because their "design" program was inaccurate). It took 5 full months and a visit from the store manager to my home to finally complete my kitchen.

Fortunately, the $3,000.00 install fee was refunded. It was a true nightmare.

go bowe
04-16-2008, 03:20 PM
Actually - the reason for this policy is because people buy tillers, generators, and other one-time use or emergency use items and then return them - used.

Home Depot and Lowes would have told him the same thing. Their policies have recently changed.

For those of you with better service at Lowes - they're the very same. I spend about 10 hours a week in one or the other of these two stores and they're identical with their service. Sometimes you'll find somebody who is a little bit worse (or better) than the next guy but that's usually due to the individual.

FWIW, Home Depot (in my town) still offers a Veteran discount program. Lowes did until last week when they abandoned it. Guess where I'll be going for the materials I have to buy at a lumber yard now?veteran discount?

can any veteran get that?

i probably don't do enough shopping at hd for it to make any difference, but it sounds like a great program...

DaneMcCloud
04-16-2008, 03:22 PM
veteran discount?

can any veteran get that?

i probably don't do enough shopping at hd for it to make any difference, but it sounds like a great program...

Only if you bring pie

88TG88
04-16-2008, 03:28 PM
There are Home Depot's all over SoCal but there's only one Lowes that I know of in Los Angeles.

.
? Theres a bunch in my part of town.

The one I frequent is on 120th and Crenshaw. Might be a little far from you though.

Chiefmanwillcatch
04-16-2008, 03:42 PM
There are Home Depot's all over SoCal but there's only one Lowes that I know of in Los Angeles.

The Home Depot Hollywood is open 24 hours. It's jam packed any time of the day or night (and I've been there 2am and couldn't believe how long the lines were that night). It's reasonably clean and organized (considering the amount of traffic) but parking's always a PITA, even with two levels but the good thing is that they usually have everything I've ever needed.

Lowes, OTOH, is more of a glorified Great Indoors or Sears. They don't have much in the way of tools, hardware (nuts & bolts) and seem to be more geared towards kitchen and bathroom installations and renovations than a true hardware store. That could just be in SoCal though, as almost every home is renovated out here at one point or another.

I purchased my kitchen cabinets at Lowes and had them do the install. It was a complete and utter nightmare. One of the installers was clearly drunk. After the cabinets were installed, they mounted all of the handles incorrectly. Every single handle was crooked and not level. So Lowes had to replace every door and drawer face (as well as order more materials because their "design" program was inaccurate). It took 5 full months and a visit from the store manager to my home to finally complete my kitchen.

Fortunately, the $3,000.00 install fee was refunded. It was a true nightmare.

Why you stealing a cart mother****er?


https://businessphotosusa.com/imagedb/img/US/90028/2006/US-90028-933253916_2006-01-04-11-00-2119172.jpg (http://maps.google.com/maps?hl=en&safe=off&client=firefox-a&rls=org.mozilla:en-US:official&hs=vft&um=1&ie=UTF-8&q=Home+Depot&near=Hollywood,+West+Hollywood,+CA&fb=1&cid=0,0,16018925517781601949&sa=X&oi=local_result&resnum=1&ct=image)

Phobia
04-16-2008, 05:12 PM
There are Home Depot's all over SoCal but there's only one Lowes that I know of in Los Angeles.

The Home Depot Hollywood is open 24 hours. It's jam packed any time of the day or night (and I've been there 2am and couldn't believe how long the lines were that night). It's reasonably clean and organized (considering the amount of traffic) but parking's always a PITA, even with two levels but the good thing is that they usually have everything I've ever needed.

Lowes, OTOH, is more of a glorified Great Indoors or Sears. They don't have much in the way of tools, hardware (nuts & bolts) and seem to be more geared towards kitchen and bathroom installations and renovations than a true hardware store. That could just be in SoCal though, as almost every home is renovated out here at one point or another.

I purchased my kitchen cabinets at Lowes and had them do the install. It was a complete and utter nightmare. One of the installers was clearly drunk. After the cabinets were installed, they mounted all of the handles incorrectly. Every single handle was crooked and not level. So Lowes had to replace every door and drawer face (as well as order more materials because their "design" program was inaccurate). It took 5 full months and a visit from the store manager to my home to finally complete my kitchen.

Fortunately, the $3,000.00 install fee was refunded. It was a true nightmare.

I don't recommend Lowes or Home Depot install services at all. They choose the guys who can't get work elsewhere - who are willing to work for peanuts. I've seen the results of their jobs plenty. In fact, my bids frequently get beat out by Home Depot or Lowes on the low end. The high end stuff is padded sufficiently that I can compete there. But if you can imagine Home Depot taking about 60% of the profits on that job - what's left if for the contractor. There's not too many skilled guys who are gonna work for that, which is why you had that experience.

DaneMcCloud
04-16-2008, 09:43 PM
I don't recommend Lowes or Home Depot install services at all. They choose the guys who can't get work elsewhere - who are willing to work for peanuts. I've seen the results of their jobs plenty. In fact, my bids frequently get beat out by Home Depot or Lowes on the low end. The high end stuff is padded sufficiently that I can compete there. But if you can imagine Home Depot taking about 60% of the profits on that job - what's left if for the contractor. There's not too many skilled guys who are gonna work for that, which is why you had that experience.

Totally. But it was my first kitchen remodel and I didn't know any better. I've recommended to friends that anyone looking to remodel their kitchen avoid Lowes & Home Depot's installers.

But as we've discussed in the past, finding a good, reliable and affordable contractor in SoCal is next to impossible. EVERYONE has a pickup truck and a contractor's license. There's such an enormous amount of money to be made in that business out here because there really isn't much new building going on. It's all retrofitting of old buildings or homes. And many of them need new plumbing and electrical before anything else.

It's a goldmine if you're a good, reliable, hard-working contractor. Too bad they're so hard to find.

Baconeater
04-16-2008, 10:08 PM
That's funny I live in NE and I've never heard of them. :hmmm:
Neither have I.

cdcox
04-16-2008, 10:20 PM
Any one who complains about home depot and lowes must not have been around back in the day. A local hardware store would be a small fraction of the size of a home depot. It would have the hardware, electrical, plumbing, paint and tool sections of home depot, but no electrical or plumbing fixtures and then reduce the size of stock by half. Lumber? go the the lumber yard. Plumbing fixture? special order or hire a contractor. Garden supplies? go to the garden store. Appliances? go to Sears or Montgomery Wards. And it was uphill both ways in the snow.

Bitch, bitch, bitch. You people don't know how good you have it.

DaneMcCloud
04-16-2008, 11:29 PM
Any one who complains about home depot and lowes must not have been around back in the day. A local hardware store would be a small fraction of the size of a home depot. It would have the hardware, electrical, plumbing, paint and tool sections of home depot, but no electrical or plumbing fixtures and then reduce the size of stock by half. Lumber? go the the lumber yard. Plumbing fixture? special order or hire a contractor. Garden supplies? go to the garden store. Appliances? go to Sears or Montgomery Wards. And it was uphill both ways in the snow.

Bitch, bitch, bitch. You people don't know how good you have it.

I think Home Depot rules. I just wouldn't have their contractors install anything in my home. At least not in SoCal.

TinyEvel
04-16-2008, 11:36 PM
I pay Mexicans to do my gardening. Never had a problem.

TinyEvel
04-16-2008, 11:37 PM
Totally. But it was my first kitchen remodel and I didn't know any better. I've recommended to friends that anyone looking to remodel their kitchen avoid Lowes & Home Depot's installers.

But as we've discussed in the past, finding a good, reliable and affordable contractor in SoCal is next to impossible. EVERYONE has a pickup truck and a contractor's license. There's such an enormous amount of money to be made in that business out here because there really isn't much new building going on. It's all retrofitting of old buildings or homes. And many of them need new plumbing and electrical before anything else.

It's a goldmine if you're a good, reliable, hard-working contractor. Too bad they're so hard to find.

F*ck you! California sux! I can buy you out in a heartbeat!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

DaneMcCloud
04-17-2008, 12:03 AM
I pay Mexicans to do my gardening. Never had a problem.

In Pesos?

DaneMcCloud
04-17-2008, 12:03 AM
F*ck you! California sux! I can buy you out in a heartbeat!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

In Pesos?